Hockey playoffs start soon
The Mississippi Valley Club Hockey Association varsity regular season is wrapping up this week, with the playoffs set to begin Monday.
The Freeburg-Waterloo Raging Bulldogs concluded the regular season with a record of 16-6-2 following a 2-0 loss Monday night to defending league champion Granite City (22-2).
Along with Granite City, O’Fallon (21-1-2) sits atop the league standings entering the postseason.
The Raging Bulldogs will take on Collinsville in the first round of the MVCHA playoffs, with game one set to take place 9 p.m. Monday in Granite City. Game two is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday in Edwardsville. If necessary, game three would be played at 7 p.m. next Thursday in Granite City.
Freeburg-Waterloo won two games last week, 8-2 over Edwardsville East last Tuesday and 13-1 over Highland last Monday.
Conner Blair, Brayden Richey and Layne Wilkens each recorded two goals and two assists for the Raging Bulldogs in the win over Edwardsville.
Wilkens finished with four goals and an assist, Blair had two goals and three assists and Anna Lugge added a goal and four assists in the win over Highland.
Blair ranks among the league’s leading scorers with 22 goals and 14 assists this season.
Freeburg-Waterloo goalie Matthew Bushee, who has logged nearly 900 minutes between the pipes this season, ranks among the tops in his position in the MVCHA with a goals against average of 2.79.
The Columbia Ice Eagles (10-12-2) do not yet know their playoff opponent, but the team ended its regular season winning three of four games.
On Monday, Columbia posted a 4-3 win over Alton.
On Thursday, the Ice Eagles won 7-1 over Edwardsville East. Rece Sanderson and Jack Reuss each scored twice for Columbia.
Reuss, who was injured for much of the season, scored two more times i a 5-2 loss last Tuesday to Granite City.
Last Monday, the Ice Eagles won 5-1 over Alton. Sanderson netted a hat trick and had an assist. Reuss added two goals and two assists.
Dalton Fitzgerald was stellar in net, finishing with 40 saves.
Reuss was one of the team’s top scorers last season, so his return to Columbia’s lineup adds offense as the playoffs begin.